June 11th, 2005

satyr, drool you bastards, bosom

So. Morrowind.

Morrowind is a first-person RPG in which you travel a vast and detailed world, seeing new cities and slaying new monsters while stealing people's pants.

No, really.

Everything is fantastically expensive when you start out, so you can hike into the wilderness and slay wild animals and wilder people, then hike back to civilization to sell their pelts for cash. It's good for your stats, it's good for the crime rate, and you don't even need to buy a lot of your armor provided you don't care that the stuff you get is slightly used.

Or you can wander the cities stealing people's household goods.

Like all RPG worlds, Morrowind is specialized; where FF9 was furnished mainly with playing cards and potions, and Ultima was furnished mainly with chairs and breadmaking equipment, the people of Morrowind put their money into nothing but groceries, booze, and dishware.

And clothing. They're very into clothing. It comes in five grades, with ascending levels of fabulousness, and people comment on your outfit when they meet you. Better yet, you get to change their outfits: If you sell them something that's better than what they already have, they put it on. There's a huge bald armorer in a provincial town who's dressed in a lovely layered gray silk skirt thanks to me. And if you steal something from somebody, they'll recognize it if you wear it in front of them. Why, I don't know, because there are only about eight styles within each grade, but perhaps as a foreigner I can't expect to understand these cultural details.

Because very little in Morrowind costs much on its own, weight is an important factor in burglary. There's no point in lugging off an eight-pound peach glass bowl if it's worth only five gold. And pound for pound, clothes are the most cost-effective thing to steal.

I now own the pants of most of the nobles in Morrowind.

I am Slipknot, thief of pants! All shall look chilly before me and despair!

(A snapshot of my life to date: A chest is booby-trapped. Me: "Someone set me up the bomb! But they shall not survive make their time when all their pants are belong to me!")

And yet, even clothes cost remarkably little, and even the highest nobles have few changes of clothes. (Before I visited, I mean.) So where is all this fabulous wealth going?

My theory: Boarding school for their children. There are no submature organisms anywhere in Morrowind. All the humans and humanoids are full-grown, all the lizard-men are full-grown, all the livestock are full-grown, all the freaking plants are full-grown. We know that people reproduce because there's at least one father-son pair in the game, but the son's a young adult. Where did he come from? Somewhere just outside the borders of Morrowind is a green and blooming paradise populated solely by children, baby animals, and beds of seedlings.

Incidentally, human/oid reproduction is asexual. No one in the game is married, or even shacking up. Occasionally there are courting couples, but they seem to be limited to highwaymen and luscious damsels. Monster reproduction is theoretically sexual--there's a sort of demon cow dog lizard thing that gets nasty in courting season, and GIANT MOANING AIRBORNE JELLYFISH OF STRANGELY BEAUTIFUL TURQUOISE DRIFTINESS that float about in packs of bulls and bettys--but two species make too small a sample to draw conclusions from.

There's also a Palace of Earthly Delights in one of the cities, but since the Earthly Delights consist of ill-tempered women doing "Sims on fire" dances, it gives the impression of being designed by a Martian who read about Earth strip joints via a Korean site translated through Babelfish. Points to Morrowind for taking the fun out of sex. I'ma go sublimate through pants theft now.
satyr, drool you bastards, bosom

(no subject)

Buffy's cough hasn't gotten any better, so yesterday I took him to a vet who told me that he has asthma, and that I should pop him in a lingerie bag and wash him.

There's no cause-effect relationship there. Which is a pity, because I could wash Buffy in a lingerie bag just as easily as I could get a complicated regimen of pills down his throat, and he'd claw me to bits only once. Be that as it may, poor wheezing Buffy has not only asthma, but a secondary infection that has him running a two-degree temperature--and who knows how long that's been going on? Aw, poor cat. The vet says the pills will make him feel like new in two days, so if the diagnosis is correct, Monday night's Running Around Like Your Ass Is On Fire Hour should be extra entertaining.

Wish me luck. Better, wish Buffy luck.